iPad

Scotia iTrade launches new iPad app for couch investing

scotia_itrade_quotesWhen it comes to investing using web tools, I flip through websites, services and research sources like a salesmen through a Rolodex making cold calls.

There are several sites and apps, and now there’s a new one entering the fray: Scotia iTrade.

The Globe ranked iTrade fourth overall out of 12 in its list of online brokers, so the service seems to be doing something reasonably well.

The iTrade app is built from the ground-up for Apple’s tablet, taking advantage of the screen real estate to display charts, numbers and tabs to sort through your portfolio – or to sort through stocks you might be interested in buying and selling.

U­sers can drag their finger across the screen to draw their own trend lines and analyze trends to inform their investment decisions.

The charting tool also lets users check out a wide group of overlays of important indicators, such as moving averages, RSI MACD and Bollinger Bands.

While the iTrade app offers research reports from various outlets, it’s also worth highlighting here a great app for investors to research U.S. equities is Stock Guru.

And if you’re not a tablet guy or gal, check out Vuru.com for algorithm-supported analysis.

Which apps do you use for stock trading on your mobile devices? Why do you like them?

Several iOS apps free for App Store’s fifth birthday

Apple_App_Store_free_appsMany good apps and games for Apple’s iPhone and iPad are free for a limited time in the App Store.

The promotion is part of birthday celebrations for the App Store’s fifth anniversary, which takes place this week.

The selection of free apps is so good, I’m a little enraged because many of them I purchased at full price.

Among the highlights:

How to Cook Everything – if you don’t know how to cook, or if you can’t shop for all the ingredients you need to cook at once, this is your ultimate app for the kitchen.

You can search through hundreds of recipes to find something you like, and then get step-by-step directions to help you prepare the meal. There are even built-in timers to nudge you along the way.

How to Cook Everything (best used on the iPad) is also great because you can rate and share recipes with other users.

Another solid app is Traktor DJ, which lets you pretend to be Tiesto or DJ Hardwell behind the screen of your iPhone or Apple tablet.

Load up two tracks and then mix the tunes together with Traktor, applying loops, filters and other cool effects.

Traktor – in particular – is almost $20 in the App Store, so it’s one of the better deals out there this week.

For what it’s worth, the app developers aren’t getting reimbursed for giving this stuff away this week.

According to ABC. the CEO of the company behind Barefoot World Atlas said the loss of sales from one week is “far outweighed” by the gain in awareness of the app.

 

Google steps inside Apple’s home with updated Google Search app

GoogleNowIt’s no secret that Apple doesn’t really love Google.

The launch of Apple’s own Maps app was an effort to get people to use a new native iOS mapping app rather than the Google-based map tool.

That project didn’t work out so well, and it even forced Apple to make a public apology online.

Now, Google is rolling out a new feature – Google Now – to iPhones and iPads with the latest update to the Google Search app.

With this move, Google is making itself comfy inside everyone’s iOS device.

Heck – the app is so convenient and it’ll feel so comfortable that Google could even be putting up its feet on the coffee table in Apple’s mobile homes.

For starters, Google Search is nothing new. It’s just an extension of the search everyone is used to on laptops and desktops…on your smartphone.

One new feature in the app is voice-activated search, a feature similar to Apple’s Siri digital assistant.

While the Google Search app can’t send a text message for you because it’s not deeply integrated with iOS, the voice dictated search is quick and responsive to most commands.

But then, there’s Google Now. This feature presents ‘cards’ of relevant information, before you even ask for it.

What’s the weather like? It’ll show you a card with local weather as you get ready in the morning. How long will it take you to get home? It’ll show you a card with traffic and travel information before you leave work – and the creepy thing is that you don’t need to actually tell the app where you live or where you work (or how you get there). It just figures that out like a creepy ex-girlfriend trying to stalk you.

Whether you think the app is creepy or convenient is up to you. But most of the time, it seems convenient.

Did you get the updated Google Search app? Do you think Google Now is creepy or convenient?

 

Apple launches 128 GB iPad

The rumours came true – almost a little too quickly.

Apple announced Tuesday that it’s launching a 128 GB model of the fourth-generation iPad.

The tablet with the monster-size storage capacity practically doubles the amount of stuff you can store on the iPad.

Previously, the biggest capacity you could get the iPad in was a 64 GB model.

The new version means you can now fit more music, movies, magazines, books and apps than ever before.

And with that much space, it’s creeping up on the amount of strage space offered by many Ultrabooks – traditional but lightweight laptops without spinning hard drives.

Apple says the 128 GB iPad will be available Tuesday Feb. 5 for $799 (WiFi only) or $929 for the WiFi + ceullular version. That’s an extra $100 for double the space.

Both will feature Apple’s sharp 9.7-inch Retina display.

How much storage space do you want on a tablet?

iPhoto for the iPad – photo editing at your fingertips

iphoto_screenshot_ipadAs an avid yet amateur photographer, I’m always spending hours refining and improving my photos. From lighting up dark shadows to darkening overexposed whites, it’s a tedious task sometimes hunched over the keyboard and mouse, staring at the screen.

I’ll admit I was skeptical about iPhoto on my iPad. Could the iPad really do a good job editing photos. Heck yes.

I use this card reader attachment from Apple to import all my photos into iPhoto, then begin fixing and tweaking photos using the array of editing tools that are as easy to use as it was to use finger paint in kindergarten – without the mess.

The app is also responsive to the strength of your touch, adjusting how hard different effects are applied.

In certain modes, you can drag your finger up/down or left/right to adjust lightness/contrast, etc.

While the app has most mainstream tools you could want for photo editing, it also lets you easily share shots on social networks  – along with the option to send photos to Flickr.

 

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